State of the Union is a 1946 Pulitzer Prize winning play by Russel Crouse and Howard Lindsay, which was adapted into a 1948 film directed by Frank Capra. The film, which starred Spencer Tracy and Katharine Hepburn, was Capra's first and only project for MGM Pictures. Its screenplay was written by Myles Connolly and Anthony Veiller. The screenplay deviated most from the play in its absence of the play's sardonic wit and more controversial themes.
A co-production of Frank Capra's own company and MGM, Capra bought the film after its initial theatrical release. It has since had limited availability on home video and has been unavailable on VHS and DVD formats. Universal will release DVD version on August 29, 2006.
Upon the urgings of newspaper manager Kay Thorndyke (Angela Lansbury), aircraft tycoon Grant Matthews (Spencer Tracy) campaign for the Republican presidential nomination. Before embarking on his journey, he reunites with estranged Mary (Katharine Hepburn) at the urging of campaign manager Spike McManus (Van Johnson). Despite knowing that her husband and Thorndyke are having an affair, Mary puts up the front of a loving wife because she knows he has solid values. After her husband sacrifices his values for votes, Mary questions her actions and her belief in her husband. But when Grant realizes what this is doing to Mary, he denounces his political backers as phonies on live radio, and declares that he will run for office honestly. Grant and Mary are reconciled.